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Durbin tells Rivian CEO that employees 'deserve the benefits and security offered by a union if they so choose'

Two men in suits
Senator Durbin's office
Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe meets with U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois.

U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin is mixing into the unionization effort at the Rivian electric vehicle plant in Normal.

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) union is trying to organize the plant. Durbin said he met with Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe on Wednesday and told him he should support unionizing efforts.

“I reiterated my support for the company’s mission while reminding Mr. Scaringe that Rivian employees deserve the benefits and security offered by a union if they so choose,” said Durbin.

Durbin's meeting with Scaringe was to talk about fortifying electric vehicle infrastructure.

“Rivian took a chance on Normal, Illinois, and it has paid off. Illinois is a leader in electric vehicle production, but only because of the unrelenting efforts of Rivian and its employees,” said Durbin.

The Illinois Democrat said he continues to support the company mission.

Durbin also walked a picket line this week with United Auto Workers members at a car plant in Bolingbrook, part of the union strike against the Big Three automakers.

In 2016, Rivian bought the shuttered Mitsubishi plant in Normal. The plant underwent a $1.2 billion renovation and now employs around 8,000 workers.

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WGLT Senior Reporter Charlie Schlenker has spent more than three award-winning decades in radio. He lives in Normal with his family.
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